Los Angeles to the Arctic Circle and back

Wednesday, June 26, 2013

Day 21: Yreka to Los Angeles !

640 miles

Spent the first 100 miles in pouring rain, riding in the Mt Shasta area

Had to cover my air filter cause the engine was bogging down.

Truckers still like westerns

After a long day riding made it home!  

Tuesday, June 25, 2013

Day 19: Hixon BC to Seattle

529 miles

Lost Arto and Ky somewhere.  They then took a wrong turn behind me and I decided to go to my brother's house in Seattle.  The last stretch of Canada was very beautiful.

Cross the border for the last time; so far this trip has been US, to Canada, back to US into Alaska, back to Canada, back to US to catch ferry, off ferry into Canada, back to US.  

A hundred miles short of Seattle I had to decide whether to listen to music on my phone knowing the battery would die or be smart and ride in silence.  I chose to listen to music.  The phone died some where and I rode into downtown Seattle in the rain with no idea where to go.  All the Starbucks's were closed, mcDonalds was phone charging proof.  It was kind of a nightmare, I walked around in the rain looking for a stray outlet.  Found one finally at a Westin Hotel's parking garage.  Got a little bit of charge, rode in the dark in the pouring rain a few more miles and was there.

Day 20: Seattle to Yreka Ca

492 miles

Found this hat across the street from my brother's house.  It was moved from somewhere else, but its the same hat Hensley skated, i think some other people skated it later, but Matt owns it.

Sunday, June 23, 2013

Day18: the Highway of Tears

Prince Rupert to Hixon 498 miles.

Woke up in a motel in Prince Rupert.  It was raining and I had to fix the headlight.  I was worried it was electrical, because the lights on on the bike have been pretty hit or miss, going out for no reason, shorting out etc, my low beam hasn't worked in a long time and the dash lights have been out most of this trip, but luckly it was just the bulb.  Ky's problems were more complicated and we u-turned around town for awhile and it still didn't get fixed

The drive was nice, but I was in a hurry to make miles and didn't take pics.  

Stopped in Smithers at the Harley dealer, ky got everything taken care of for $5. Which was very kind of the mechanics.  His card declined for that amount and I gave them $5 American. 

Kept riding after that through towns we already passed on the way north.  But everything looked different traveling in a different direction.  

Ky really small and the super moon.

Ky found us a campsite on the map 40miles past Prince George and texted Arto to meet us there.  I looked at my map and it was 40miles on the wrong highway.  I said I was not going 80 miles extra, especially since it was dark. I need to get home, I'm behind on work, my dog and fiancĂ© miss me, unless its the awesomest campsite in the world, I don't want to go any distance out of the way.  But we couldn't track down Arto and figured he was already headed there.  I didn't want to ditch so i begrudgingly headed that way.   There was vicious lighting in the black and it was right on track to where we were heading.  It looked like a really bad storm, almost tornado weather.  It started to rain and then a sign said 200k no services.  I finally u-turned, it looked so treacherous. I looked at my phone and Arto had headed in the correct direction anyway, to a town 40 miles south of Prince George called Hixon.  We rode in the dark and light rain, there were no lines in the road, it was just a sketchy country highway with occasional trucks, it definitely was one if the lamer legs of the trip, but those always seem rad in retrospect.  Got to the site, saw Arto's tent, pitched ours and passed out.

Saturday, June 22, 2013

Day 16 +17: Alaska Marine Highway - Haines to Prince Rupert

Zero riding miles

Got on the ferry and started pitching tents.  The lounge chair seemed like a good fit


The view from my luxury suite

Glacier spotting.  I loved my tent set up, it was the first time I've ever been able to leave the tent flaps open, because there are were no bugs.  I fell asleep with it wide open.  The lounge chair was nice cause I could put my stuff under it and I was off the cold hard deck.

 and woke up to actual night!  I have never been so happy to see nothing.  At first I didn't know where I was and was kind of confused.  I really needed some sleep.

A little bit of rain in the morning.  It was nice, the wind was a little annoying.  There was a shower on the boat which was great after 3 nights in a row of camping, two of which were on the side of the road

The whole thing was a nice vibe and I wished we could have taken it all the way to Billingham, which is an option on other days.   

Food court

Sometimes it's a full blown tent city on the boat, would have been nice for pictures

Some adventure biker (is that what they're called?  Those metal bikes?) told me that taking the ferry is cheating.  I can't cheat if I'm not trying to win, I wanted to take this boat in order to see parts of Alaska that arn't connected by roads, I also loved the idea of camping on the deck.  It was really nice, I got some reading done, ate food, lounged in my tent.  There were movies playing and a bar you can drink at.  The ticket price was pretty expensive, and it got about the same miles as riding would have gotten us in equal time.  

Arrived in Prince Rupert after two days and one night on the boat.  It sucks to have to get off and find a motel.  My headlight isn't working so had to ride 5 miles in the dark hoping not to see a cop.

Paid $90 for this crappy place:

Thursday, June 20, 2013

Day 15: Tok to Haines

438 miles

Left Tok and saw forest fires.  Ky's forward controls were falling off and we spent a lot of time on the side of the road.   My headlight also quit working.

This photo was taken in Canada

Got to Haines junction and took that road towards Haines Alaska.  It was an amazing route with the kind of views I pictured of Alaska.  If i do this trip again, I'm skipping the Arctic Circle quest and driving more mountain highways.

My shadow

Storms ahead

Photography bikers


We were starting to go in to a storm, so we stopped and camped.  There were almost zero cars on the road.  I was still worried about getting eaten by a bear.

I'm guessing moose prints

Morning- woke up at 6:00am and headed to the border.

Got there and it was closed.  So we would have had to camp out anyway.  That explains why there were no cars on the highway.  It opened at 7am

And made it to the ferry!